Trustee Vacancies 2022

The Penzance Literary Festival is seeking two trustees to support the governance of our charity and play a part in shaping a creative and sustainable organisation.

We’re especially interested in hearing from you if you have experience in one or more of the following areas:

  • fundraising and sponsorship 
  • online programming and digital development
  • increasing audience diversity
  • building relationships with business.

About us

The Penzance Literary Festival CIO (Reg. Charity No. 1168422) was set up to promote and provide opportunities for appreciating, understanding and enjoying literature. 

Our main activity is running and maintaining the annual Penzance LitFest, which was started in 2010 and since then has grown steadily to become a fixture on both the local and national scene. The festival takes place over four days at the beginning of July and attracts writers and readers from West Penwith, the whole of Cornwall and beyond.

The LitFest celebrated its 10th edition in 2019. However, with no event in 2020 or 2021 because of the COVID pandemic, the trustees have taken the opportunity offered by this enforced break to take stock and to consider what steps we need to take to secure a sustainable future for the LitFest. The recruitment of new trustees with specific skills is an important part of this process.

The day-to-day work of running the LitFest is carried out by a volunteer organising team, which meets separately from the board of trustees. The LitFest is mainly financed by box office income from the July event together with small grants from local government and local tourism and arts organisations. Because of the impact of the pandemic on our income and expenses, one of our goals for 2022 and beyond is to increase the amount of funding we receive from grant awarding bodies and from sponsorship. 

Information for applicants

To help us build a sustainable future and reach out to new audiences, we are seeking applicants with experience in at least one of the following areas: online programming and digital development; fundraising and sponsorship; increasing audience diversity; forging relationships with local business.

We want our board to represent a range of ages, backgrounds, skills and experiences, to promote different perspectives and help the LitFest reach out to new audiences. You do not have to have previous experience as a trustee in order to be considered for one of these positions, but you must be willing to demonstrate an understanding of the duties and responsibilities of being a board member, be able to attend meetings in person or remotely – as required – and be willing to spend up to one day per month outside trustee meetings to helping the development of the LitFest.

You do not have to be working in publishing or the cultural sector, but you should be able to demonstrate an interest in books and reading and/or the arts in general. You should also be able to demonstrate knowledge of the cultural scene in West Cornwall and Cornwall more widely. 

What’s involved?

Trustee appointments will be for three years in the first instance.

You will need to be available to attend four meetings a year, usually in March, June, September and an Annual General Meeting in early January. You should also be willing to spend up to one day per month on activities initiated by the board.

These roles are unpaid. However the cost of travel to meetings and other expenses that trustees have to incur in order to carry out their duties will be covered. 

Application process

Please email a short CV together with a statement outlining why you are interested in joining the trustee board and describing the skills and experiences you would bring to the position.  

Shortlisted applicants may be invited to an interview with the Chair of Trustees and other board members.  We will ask all shortlisted applicants to supply references.  

Please put Penzance Literary Festival Trustee as the subject line of your email and send your application to

  • Deadline for applications Monday, 17th January 2022
  • Interviews During February 2022